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Security Levels

Understanding a Storm

Tropical disturbance: An area of disturbed weather in the tropics.

Tropical Depression: A low-pressure area in the tropics with a surface wind less than 38 mph.

Tropical Storm: Surface winds of 39 - 74 mph.

Hurricane: Surface winds greater than 75 mph.

Hurricane Watch: Issued when a hurricane or tropical storm may threaten an area within 24 hours. This does not indicate immediate danger, but is an alert to caution residents and emergency forces in the area. When your area is under a "Watch," continue normal activities, but stay tuned to the radio or television for all weather service advisories.

Hurricane Warning: Issued when it is expected the hurricane or tropical storm will strike an area within 24 hours. The area is expected to feel the hurricane or tropical storm. Precautions should be taken immediately.

NOAA Hurricane Basics

Last Modified 12/3/2015